All posts by aaronjhill

Born in Iowa, I now live in Seattle. My parents met in South Dakota. During the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl many families left. My great uncle made his way west in 1939 with some of his hometown friends. Their destination was Anacortes, Washington, where they'd landed jobs building a log mill. My great uncle continued to Seattle, for a time living in the Greenlake neighborhood with a family from that same hometown.

Lincoln at Gettysburg

May we, as Abraham Lincoln said at Gettysburg, “highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

On St. Patrick’s Day in 1764, somewhere in Ireland, James Boal, great-grandfather of my great-great-grandmother Nettie Ann Boal, was born.

He became a linen and carpet weaver, a vocation probably learned from his father. James married Elizabeth Welch in 1787. James and Elizabeth left for America in 1790 with their two children, Margaret and George. They left from Londonderry in Northern Ireland, where they had been living.

“The trip was made by the cheapest passage.” It was not a pleasant journey. “The voyage of three months was a stormy one, during which the ship sprang a leak, and much of the cargo, including some of the goods belonging to the Boal family, was thrown overboard.”

They were Presbyterians, indicating that the Boal family likely had come from Scotland at some point and settled in Ireland. James and the family lived in central Pennsylvania, in Centre County, near Boalsburg. His son William, grandfather of Nettie, lived in Solon, Iowa, near Oasis where my great-great-grandfather Jerome Darling married Nettie.